We were lucky enough to experience this thriving eco-system booming with wildlife from the best vantage point possible: right in the middle of it!  Took a few fantastic photos, made hundreds of fantastic memories!  Hats off to our guide, Mr. Andre, for showing off his magical home and its enchanting creatures to us in the best light, thank you!

Impala - abundant but nonetheless exquisitely beautiful.jpg
Impala, the first – and most abundant – animals we saw.  Regardless of how often we saw them could not get over their sublime elegance!
photographing elephant 1
The thrill of spotting one of the Big Five never got old, even after multiple sightings!
Photographing Elephant 2
Getting closer…
Elephant 1
In his full glory!

 

Utter handsomeness.jpg
This stately lion was the star of the show on our first safari drive, what a poser!
Comorant.jpg
We got several superb shots of the stunning birds!  How graceful does this cormorant look drying its wings!  And the cloudless blue sky provides the perfect contrast in the reflection.
Photographing magnificent fishing eagles.JPG
Camera poised to photograph these magnificent fishing eagles… Super-guide Andre would give us a heads up of when they were about to fly off and in what direction so we could capture the perfect take off shot!

 

Fishing Eagle.jpg
And here it is!  Look at the power in those wings!
Spotted a herd of 10 rhino!.jpg
I couldn’t contain myself when we spotted a herd of TEN rhino!!  And don’t be fooled by the fact that they weigh several thousand lbs, they’re still pretty good at camouflage! Can you spot them?!
rhino herd.jpg
Easier to see zoomed in!  The other half of the herd was closer to the foot of the mountain.
Lioness near camp.jpg
Nothing wakes you up before sunrise like finding an imposing lioness near camp!  That stare makes it pretty clear this is one lady you do not want to cross! Respect.
Pearl spotted owl in a tree.JPG
And the incredible sightings continue even as the sky darkens – a pearl spotted owl happy to perch for a photo against the dusky backdrop!
Pearl Spotted Owl close up
Pearl spotted owl, close up!

 

photgrpahs do not do justice to the sheer presence these beasts have.jpg
No matter how many books you read, nothing can quite prepare you for the sheer awe-inspiring presence these amazing beasts have!
up close and personal!.jpg
Up close and personal! In these heart stopping moments you really  appreciate their might, and also their intelligence.  Seeing the elephants respond to the tone of voice our guide used and watching his interaction with these wild but wise creatures was TOTALLY AWESOME!!!  I have definitely been swayed to accept the elephant as the true king of the jungle!
rhino rear view.jpg
Seeing animals – endangered species at that – walking in the middle of the trail became almost commonplace!!  Among the many insights our super guide provided, he showed us how to estimate a young rhino’s age – this one is about 18 months old!
Monitor Lizard.jpg
The variety of animals and plants is astonishing!  A delightful female monitor lizard, whose tracks we saw not far from where this photo was taken!
Photographing giraffe.JPG
And the giraffe makes an appearance!  It was like the animals had a script to follow, all keen for their photo op in turn!  Not sure who’s checking who out here…
if you see one giraffe, there will be more.jpg
We were reliably informed by Mr. Andre, if you see one giraffe, there will be others close by…
there they are!
Bingo!
rhino and bird.jpg
We saw rhino on every drive!  A whopping twenty five in total!  And they put on a fantastic show each time – even the bird joined in here for a Nat Geo style photo lol
is that no. 4 of the big 5
Ooooh is that No.4 of the Big Five that I see?
4 of 5 - Cape Buffalo.jpg
Indeed it is – meet the Cape Buffalo, grazing away! Pretty impressive boss you’ve got mister!
OMG
In case you were starting to get complacent, take a load of that to get the adrenaline going!!  The lions are so well blended with the surroundings, they hide in plain sight and you don’t spot them till you’re pretty darn close!! Got jarred from a semi-awake state during our last pre-sunrise drive by this strapping lass!!  What a fitting finale to one heck of a show!!